saxon59

Tautog

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36 posts in this topic

Seems that we are a bit late in starting thread this year.

Word for all members who don't fish for tautog, called a 'trash' fish by some or ugly, slimy, or whatever, let me say this, you wish to extend your season a few weeks instead of stock trout, get into a scrap with a pitbull, and give tautog fishing a try. On any given day, anybody can by chance hook into a large fish, but to catch consistently it takes planning and paying attention to detail, same as striper fishing. Anyone interested, now and for the next few weeks is the time to tackle these hard fighting brutes.

With the recent success of anglers using jigs, I took this concept, gave it a bit of thought and came up with my own version to enable me to fish with the advantage these stationary type jigs on a silt, mud or a bottom covered with mung. So far this year it has been about even the number of fish taken with the jig against a straight crab, but the quality of fish on the jig is far superior.

This morning proved that out again with a couple of undersized fish and 2 small keepers against 3 fish over 20inches on jig, biggest shown in photo.

Second picture is a bunch of 'jigs', drying after epoxy.

 

 

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Mike/Phil,

The jig heads are actually wood balls.

I experimented with styrofoam at one point but they didn't hold up, the fish were trying to eat them and crushed them.The wood jigs are drilled,painted and epoxied.

They are fished on a short, 8/10 inch long fishfinder rig, the wood gives just enough buoyancy to lift off the bottom out of the crap. I am using 2 types of hook attachment, one with the hook and leader epoxied into the jig, and the other is pegging it with a toothpick about 1 inch from the eye of the hook, both seem to work.

This rig is fished stationary not as with a conventional jig. About every 2 minutes I lift the rig about a foot off the bottom and let it settle back down, this sometimes results in an immediate hit, My take on this is that the fish is watching the jig/crab and it thinks it is getting away and pounces before it gets another chance.

I only fish crab pieces on the fishfinder rig. If I go whole live crab I fish a dropper type rig with short hook length to keep the crab off the bottom. a live crab on the bottom will pick up mung and nothing will touch it.

Mike, it's still  bait and wait, the standard tog jig or my buoyant one just an attractor, no way do you jig as a bucktail.

Photos below are a few foam attractors I was experimenting with a couple of years back.

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1 hour ago, mikez2 said:

How's it work?

I've been tempted for year to try for them. Not a huge sit n soak bait guy. Jigs sound interesting. 

I use lead jigs (about 1 oz) but Saxon's set up looks very interesting. I let the jig (baited with a whole crab) sit on the bottom with a "very slight" amount of slack (say 2-3 extra inches). The idea is to have the tog pick up the bait and inhale it while swimming off and not thinking there is anything attached. When I see (or think I see) the fish moving off with the bait I lift the rod and if the fish is there, I set the hook. I find it more interesting than a regular bait rig but on many days the standard high/low rig works better. 

Some pics from today:

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14 hours ago, jason colby said:

I use lead jigs (about 1 oz) but Saxon's set up looks very interesting. I let the jig (baited with a whole crab) sit on the bottom with a "very slight" amount of slack (say 2-3 extra inches). The idea is to have the tog pick up the bait and inhale it while swimming off and not thinking there is anything attached. When I see (or think I see) the fish moving off with the bait I lift the rod and if the fish is there, I set the hook. I find it more interesting than a regular bait rig but on many days the standard high/low rig works better. 

Some pics from today:

101919deck.JPG

101919al.JPG

101919mike.JPG

101919john.JPG

I like the jig head idea. Seems a little closer to the interactive type of fishing I prefer. 

 

I do see the value of floating the bait off the bottom. 

The exact same thing as floating a pumped up nightcrawler or chunk of powerbait off the weeds for trout.

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This looks interesting and something I may try. What size wood ball are you using? What size hook?

i haven’t fished for tog in years. This is something I can easily carry around and try if the other species I’m targeting are no where to be found. 

I fish from shore. How long do the tog hang around the shore in buzzard bay sokonnet river Newport area?

 

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5 hours ago, mikez2 said:

I like the jig head idea. Seems a little closer to the interactive type of fishing I prefer. 

 

I do see the value of floating the bait off the bottom. 

The exact same thing as floating a pumped up nightcrawler or chunk of powerbait off the weeds for trout.

I'd like to hear what Saxon says about "why" for his rig. I can tell you when the water is cloudy (like it's been tossed by the wind we had Thursday) like today, the regular bait rig (high/low) prevails. I'll bet Saxon's rig would still work well in that circumstance....

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Jason, as to "Why" it's a 2 part thing with me.

First as anglers, we are always trying to improve our techniques/presentations to be more successful.

Second, it's the challenge part for me. Make your own lure, tie your own fly, it's the satisfaction you get from fooling that fish on something that you have created yourself.

So, to tautog jigs. I was never successful using them mainly due to the bottom where I fish is covered with mung or very soft. Every cast or drop the jig was immediately weeded up.

I still liked the idea of the jig head being an attractor, due to the nature of tautog being a curious fish, something to draw him in.I needed something to get me off the bottom or at least not sink in. As said previously I tried foam 'eggs' instead of a jig head, no good too fragile.Next step was something not as fragile but somewhat buoyant.Looking round craft shops I found what might work in these wood balls.Last winter one of my projects was to come up with a finished article which might work. So now I am in the process of testing them out. I don't get nibbles from small fish as much and as you say maybe an advantage used on any rig in cloudy water.

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On 10/19/2019 at 6:48 PM, Fishingboston said:

What's a good set up for jigging for togs without breaking the bank?

You fishing from a boat?   Many use their boat spin rods so I wouldn’t run and buy a new rod til you give it a try a few times.  Just make sure the rod has some backbone.  

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14 mins ago, notime said:

You fishing from a boat?   Many use their boat spin rods so I wouldn’t run and buy a new rod til you give it a try a few times.  Just make sure the rod has some backbone.  

Unfortunately from shore. I do have a trevala casting set up. But i suck at casting it

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Posted (edited) · Report post

10 hours ago, Fishingboston said:

Unfortunately from shore. I do have a trevala casting set up. But i suck at casting it

Lucky for you, a long cast is not necessary. Find a jetty that is safe to walk out on and cast your rig or jig as far as the rocks at your feet. The spot where the big rocks meet the sand/gravel is ideal. If there is too much wave action you will have a lot of trouble (you will constantly get swept into the rocks)  but if you have a calm area, work it. I heard that Scituate Jetty has some tog as well as most any rocky spot from Buzzards Bay south and west...

Edited by jason colby

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